24 hours removed from the show of shows it was Wrestlemania Remix Night on WWE RAW
, with many of the matches coming as twists on the previous night’s matches. And in the true end to Wrestlemania weekend Batista returned to defend Vince McMahon against Randy Orton and The Legacy. Not every Wrestlemania weekend will be perfect but all will bring memorable moments and great times. I think it’s fair to say that in the end this year’s show delivered at least that much.
Okay, so let’s get into it. Did you ever have a really awkward conversation with someone who’s embarrassing themself and doesn’t realize it? If you’re a girl just think back to your last breakup. You know how you try to clue the person in and let them know they should just stop before they dig a deeper hole for themselves? But they never get it, do they? Because by that point they just can’t help themselves. That’s sort of how I feel about Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole.
The fans online were all over them Sunday night for pretending not to realize that Santina Marella and Santino Marella were the same person. I mean, that’s worse than saying you can’t tell that Superman is Clark Kent with his glasses off. Come on, guys. For a company very concerned about coming across as realistic and competing with UFC that’s absurd. It’s probably not Lawler’s decision but he should still be embarrassed to have to play it that way.
I will concede one thing, though, and it’s painful for me to admit. I hated the Santina Marella gimmick and hoped against hope they wouldn’t go there Sunday night. It made a mockery of an event that should have celebrated women’s wrestling, to say nothing of the social politics, which doesn‘t seem worth going into.
That being said his smack talk with Beth Phoenix tonight was pure entertainment. When he pinned Beth that was even funnier. Now the angle looks likely to continue through Backlash and, strangely enough, I won’t say I’m not looking forward to it. The man is just a born comedian. For all he may have an undesirable role he just crushes it every time out.
As a random side note, let me also take this opportunity to say that Randy Orton’s theme song is spot on perfect. Whoever put that together must have been jumping and down. They probably felt like Mozart for nailing a pro wrestling entrance theme. I will also give a lot of props to the song writers for Shelton Benjamin, MVP and Umaga. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that I’m listing some of my personal favorite wrestlers. Every time those guys come to the ring I get fired up to see the match and I remember why I’m into those characters.
In other action tonight, John Cena, Jeff Hardy, CM Punk, Rey Mysterio and Ricky Steamboat fought Edge, Chris Jericho, The Big Show, Kane and Matt Hardy in an impressive ten spot of beloved veterans. The big finish, in which Ricky Steamboat and Rey Mysterio simultaneously leapt off the top rope to finish off Edge and Chris Jericho was as magical as many of Sunday night’s best moments, even if it won’t be remembered as vividly. Steamboat, presumably in the last match of his career, took us out by striking a top rope pose in each corner of the ring while Cena and the baby faces clapped for him down below.
I respect when stars from the past are willing to take a loss in order to put over the next generation, but I also respect it when stars of today take an obvious dive in order to show respect for the people who paved the way. Usually getting beat makes a character look weaker but in situations like this fans understand the meaning behind the gesture and their respect for the loser grows.
I also love seeing how sincerely the fans have embraced Steamboat. Last night at Wrestlemania they were chanting “You’ve still got it!” and they reprised the same chant tonight. “Let’s go Steamboat!” roared through the building like a drinking song through a bar full of rowdy old men. It’s a darn sight better than what the fans were chanting for Jimmy Snuka Sunday night - “You’re a hundred! You’re a hundred!”
If you haven't yet check out my anecdotes from Wrestlemania
including spyglasses, hugging strangers and getting Mickey Rourke's attention, our preview of the event
and our rundown afterwards
and my commentary on the Hall of Fame induction ceremony
-Henry Jenkins, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of © 2009 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.)